Below is the content of the current issue, formatted to align with entries in Phil Stephensen-Payne’sGalactic Central reference website.
Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine [v66 #1/2. January/February 2021] ed. Linda Landrigan, mng. ed. Emily Hockaday (Dell Magazines, $7.99, 192pp, digest, cover by Shutterstock.com) 3 • Contents Page 5 • Fatal Resolutions/The Lineup • Linda Landrigan • ed 6 • Hard Money • Kevin Egan • ss; illustration by Daniel Zalkus 17 • Scrambled Alleyn I • Mark Lagasse • pz 18 • A Helping Hand • R.T. Lawton • ss 28 • Fake News • Larry Light • ss 47 • I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus • Rebecca Cantrell • ss 52 • Backwords • John H. Dirckx • ss 71 • Mysterious Photograph: It’s All Down From Here • Anon • cn; $25 given to best short-short to explain the photograph. 72 • There’s Nothing Funny About Murder • Michael Mallory • ss 91 • Reader, I Killed Him • Meredith Anthony • ss 96 • Ticking of the Big Clock • O’Neil De Noux • ss; illustration by Ron Chionna 122 • Booked & Printed • Laurel Flores Fantauzzo • rc 126 • The Underneath • Stephen Ross • ss 132 • Piper at the Back Door of Dawn • Dan Crawford • ss 138 • Dying Words Acrostic Puzzle • Arlene Fisher • pz 140 • Coming Clean • Leslie Budewitz • ss 152 • Mr. Jolly Gets His Jollies • Time Burke • ss; illustration by Kelly Denato 160 • Accusing Agnes • Marianne Wilski Strong • ss 170 • A Family Matter • Barb Goffman • ss 179 • The Masque of the Red Death • Edgar Allan Poe • AHMM’s “Mystery Classic.” 184 • Case Files: Moving in Bad Company (Part I) • Lee Lofland • cl 188 • The Story That Won: Don’t Call Me Peanut • Elaine Taylor • ss; winner of the September/October 2020 “Mysterious Photograph” contest. 189 • Statement of Ownership, Management, and Circulation • Peter Kanter • ms
New Releases Nostalgia Digest Autumn 2020 Contents Steve Darnall “Hello, Out There in Radioland!” Steve Darnall “Reflections of a Golden Age” (cover story) Dan McGuire “At This Theatre Next Week” Chapter Four Jordan Elliott “Man and Superman” (Clayton Collyer) Clair Schulz “Smilin’ Through” (Pegy Lynch) Walter Scannell “This Ladd for Hire” (Alan Ladd) Wayne Klatt “Pleasant Screams” (radio’s scary shows) Alex Udvary “Hollywood Madmen” (Clark & McCullogh) Stone Wallace “Prince of Players” (Raymond Massey) Mail Call Plus, the Radio Program Guide for Those Were the Days and WGN Radio Theatre
Nostalgia Digest Book 46 Chapter 4 Autumn 2020 Editor: Steve Darnall Cover: Mark Braun 5.5” x 8.5” 64 pages, b&w interior $4.50 on newsstands Four-issue subscription $17 Eight-issue subscription $30 Nostalgia Digest website
Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine Sep/Oct 2020 Contents Page Linda Landrigan: A Word of Thanks The Lineup Elliot F. Sweeney “Mrs. White Hart” art by Kimberly Cho Dan Crawford “Storage” Jane Pendjiky “Fruiting Bodies” Mysterious Photograph $25 fiction contest “The Handoff” Christopher Latragna “Call it Sad, Call it Funny” Sharon Jarvis “Who Killed What’s Her Name?” Laurel Flores Fantauzzo: Booked and Printed James Sallis “The Beauty of Sunsets” Wouter Boonstra “Archored” translated from the Dutch by Josh Pachter Steven Gore “Inflection” art by Daniel Zalkus Mark Lagasse: Scrambled Hitch (puzzle, solution on page 192) Arlene Fisher: Dying Words (acrostic puzzle, solution on page 192) Richard Freeborn “Family Harmony” John Paul Davies “Limited Edition” Dave Zeltserman “Past Due” art by Kevin Speidell Michael Nethercott “Old Echoes” Tom Larsen “Buscando Tupac” Bob Tippee “You Said This Was Business” Josh Pachter selects/introduces a Mystery Classic: “Thubway Tham’s Hoodoo Roll” by Johnston McCulley (Detective Story Magazine Nov. 12, 1921) Lee Lofland’s Case File: Excited Delirium The Story That Won (May/Jun) “Never a Dull Moment in the Kitchen” by Rosemary Herbert Coming in AHMM Nov/Dec 2020 Directory of Services/Indicia
Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine Vol. 65 No. 9 & 10 Sep/Oct 2020 Publisher: Peter Kanter Editor: Linda Landrigan Managing Editor: Jackie Sherbow Senior Director of Art & Production: Porter C. McKinnon Senior ADs: Victoria Green, Thomas Slosser Cover: Erika Steiskal 192 pages $7.99 on newsstands until Oct. 20, 2020 Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine website
Amazing Selects No. 3: Adrift in the Sea of Souls by David Gerrold Contents Page Adam-Troy Castro’s Introduction: The Sprung Chicken Steve Davidson’s Publisher’s Note: David Gerrold David Gerrold “Adrift in the Sea of Souls” David Gerrold “The White Piano” David Gerrold “Jacob in Manhattan” Author’s Afterword About the Author Art the Artist: M.D. Jackson
Also out is Mystery Weekly Magazine Sep. 2020, with stories by Nick LeGrand, Edward Lodi, Joseph S. Walker, Benjamin Mark, William Burton McCormick, Shea E. Butler, Stan Dryer, and Eric B. Rurark. Available in print $7.99 and Kindle $3.99
Storytime Charlie Cancel’s “R/amitheasshole Posted by Tammy Whammy 2 Hours Ago” at Pulp Modern Flash.
Josh Pachter reads his “The Secret Lagoon” from EQMM Sep/Oct 2019 at Podomatic.
Zine Scene Jim Main’sBrain Freeze No. 5 was released this week. Its contributor list is too long to re-create here, but includes TDE illustrator Rick McCollum. The 52-page zine is available for $6.25 post paid from: Main Enterprises PO Box 93 New Milford, CT 06776
TDE Contributors’ Corner Jack Seabrook and Peter Enfantino review The Brave and the Bold No. 167, Batman No. 328, and Detective No. 495 at bare•bones e-zine.
Richard Kellogg sent a press release for his new book: Barry Baskerville’s Christmas Mystery (Airship 27, 2020) by Richard Kellogg and lavishly illustrated by Gary Kato, is now available from Amazon.com. In the seventh entry of this series of mysteries for children, Barry uses all his skills of observation and deduction to identify a thief who has been stealing Christmas trees from the lawns of the residents of Watsonville. Young readers will learn about the methods used by Sherlock Holmes while improving their own problem-solving skills. Sherlockians will find the book a great holiday gift for their children and grandchildren.
Jack Seabrook’s The Hitchcock Project—Harold Swanton Part Seven: Bang! You’re Dead at bare•bones e-zine.
Readin’ and Writin’ Alec Cizak offers creative writing tips on plotting at ACTV.
Did a fair about of reading this week, but didn’t finish any one of the books or digests currently in play. More next week.
Finished retouching the pages of Head No. 1 for Marc Myer’s upcoming Roman Scott collection.
This week’s progress on TDE13: Steve Carper sent nearly a dozen cover scans for his upcoming article on digest SF novels. Jack Seabrook tapped Walker Martin for help securing the final images from Mystery Book Magazine No. 16, for Jack’s article on Leo Marr. And the color work on Bob Vojtko’s six gag cartoons was completed. Four will appear on one page I’ve dubbed “Zowie” in tribute to the Lopez digest magazine from the 1970s.
Our current issue: The Digest Enthusiast No. 12 is available in print at Lulu.com and Amazon, and in digital formats at Kindle Books and Magzter.
Vintage Science Fiction Digest Galaxy Aug. 1977 Inside front cover by James R. Odbert Contents Page Calendar James Patrick Bean’s Editorial: Galaxy and the Galaxy Harbert Charles Petley “…and Earth So Far Away” art by Stephen Fabian Frederik Pohl: Postscript to Gateway Charles Sheffield “Perfectly Safe, Nothing to Worry About” Jerry Pournelle, PhD: A Step Farther Out (science fact) Frank Herbert “The Dosadi Experiment” Richard E. Geis: The Alien Viewpoint art by Tim Kirk Arsen Darnay “Pheromonal Fountain” Spider Robinson: Galaxy Bookshelf Jay Brandon “The All-Soul is Calling Quinlan” art by Stephen Fabian Directions (letter pages) Galaxy/If SF Mart (classified ads)
Galaxy Science Fiction Vol 38 No. 6 August 1977 Publisher: Arnold E. Abramson Editor: James Patrick Baen Art Director: Stephen Fabian Assistant Editor: Elaine Will Science Editor: J.E. Pournelle, PhD Contributing Editor: Spider Robinson Consulting Editor: Theodore Sturgeon Cover: Kelly Freas 5.25” x 7.75” 160 pages $1.25
New Releases Pulp Modern Vol. 2 No. 5 Summer 2020 Contents Page Alec Cizak: From the Editor Andrew Bourelle “Companion” Peter W.J. Hayes “The Bowie Knife” Mandi Jourdan “These Violent Delights” “Doc” Clancy “Ghost Town” Timothy Friend “Burnin’ Love” Serena Jayne “Necessary Evils” Adam S. Furman “Intercession” Victoria Weisfeld “The Unbroken Circle” Nils Gilbertson “How to Make a Boulevardier”
Publishers: Uncle B Publications & Larque Press LLC Editor: Alec Cizak Design: Richard Krauss Cover: Rick McCollum Interior Artwork: Ran Scott Cartoons: Bob Vojtko 5.5” x 8.5” 132 pages Print $6.99 Kindle $2.99
Editor Alec Cizak reads his introduction to the issue on ACTV.
Uncle Jack (Seabrook) and Cousin Peter (Enfantino) review Vampirella No. 17, Eerie No. 40, and Creepy No. 46 at bare•bones e-zine.
Readin’ and Writin’ There’s no other magazine I can think of like Nostalgia Digest. It’s kind of like TV Guide, only for radio; radio from its golden era celebrated anew every Saturday on WDCB and WGN, on air and online. The quarterly Digest shares the schedules and synopsis of all the shows and rounds out every issue with nearly a dozen articles on celebrities, popular culture, and history. The Summer 2020 edition, which I read this week, is the all-vintage swimsuit issue, featuring celebrities Ava Gardner, Doris Day, Anne Baxter, Kirk Douglas, Loretta Young, Alexis Smith, Jackie Cooper, Leila Ernest, Kay Stewart, Eddie Bracken, Richard Conte, Gene Tierney, Beryl Vaughn, Jimmy Durante, Maureen O’Hara, Marie Windsor, and Ginger Rogers. The articles on Keir Dullea, Andy Griffith, Jack Pearl, wartime baseball, the Chautauqua movement, and Jimmy Stewart were all enlightening and entertaining. My thanks to Editor, Publisher, and Host Steve Darnall for another great issue, and for all you do to keep old time radio and those thrilling days of yesteryear alive!
Also read the second issue of Verdict, for a work-in-progress article. Haven’t decided yet if it’s for The Digest Enthusiast No. 13, or elsewhere. Verdict No. 2 a terrific issue of a terrific magazine. Sad it only lasted four issues. Some strong entries here by Samuel Blas, Bruno Fischer, Dorothy B. Hughes, Henry Kane, Cornell Woolrich and of course Rex Stout, whose Neo Wolfe novel Fer De Lance is serialized.
Thanks also to David Haden of Tentaclii, an H.P. Lovecraft blog, for including The Digest Enthusiast No. 12 in a post this week.
Received comp copies of the new issue of The Digest Enthusiast No. 12 from the printer and began mailing them out to contributors. This time the printed book was produced by Lulu.com and I’m very pleased with the results. Their all-new website and new standard color option enabled this edition to include a full color interior at a reasonable, if not inexpensive, price. The book is available in print at lulu.com and for Kindle and Magzter. Among many other features is Lester del Rey’s The Five Ages of Science Fiction by Ward Smith.
May Digest Magazines Alfred Hitchcok’s May/Jun 2020 This issue marks the introduction of former police detective Lee Lofland’s new column Case Files, “offering insights into the working lives and daily realities of those involved in law enforcement.” Contents Page Linda Landrigan: Trapped! (introduction) The Lineup Joseph S. Walker “Etta at the End of the World” art by Kimberly Cho Jeff Cohen “The Question of the Befuddled Judge” Ken Brosky “Airless Confinement” Parker Littlewood “Buck Solves the Case” Arlene Fisher: Dying Words (acrostic puzzle, solution on page 192) Robert Lopresti “Shanks Saves the World” art by Kevin Speidell Mark Lagasse: Scrambled Plum (puzzle, solution on page 105) Joslyn Chase “The Wolf and Lamb” Laurel Flores Fantauzzo: Booked and Printed —The Devil Aspect by Craig Russell —Anti-Social by Andrew Marantz Viking —Phantom Lady by Christina Lane Elizabeth Zelvin “Reunion” Mysterious Photograph $25 fiction contest “Never a Dull Moment in the Kitchen” Michael Bracken “Sleepy River” Bob Tippee “A Bias for Action” John G. Wimer “Probable Cause” Mark Thielman “The Case of the Cereal Killer” art by Enan Liang Sarah Weinman “Limited Liability” Eve Fisher “Brother’s Keeper” Janice Law “The Client” Russell Atwood selects/introduces a Mystery Classic” “A Gross Miscarriage of Justice” by Joyce Porter Lee Lofland’s Case Files The Story That Won (Jan/Feb) “Famous Last Words” by S.D. Burke Coming in AHMM Mar/Apr 2020 Directory of Services/Indicia Classified Marketplace
Analog May/Jun 2020 Emily Hockaday’s Anniversary Retrospective Editorial: Here There Be Women Anne McCaffrey “Weyr Search” (90th Anniversary Retrospective Reprint) G.O. Clark “Miles to Go Before We Rest” (verse) Neal Asher “Moral Biology” Richard A. Lovett’s Science Fact—Space Dust: How an Asteroid Altered Life on Earth . . . Millions of Years Before the Dinosaurs Tom Jolly “A Breath of Air” art by Soo Lee Sarah Gallien “The New Planet” (verse) Dominica Phetteplace “Candida Eve” John G. Cramer’s The Alternate View: Is the Universe a Hypersphere? Aimee Ogden “To Persist, However Changed” James Sallis “Net Loss” Phoebe Barton “A Compass in the Dark” In Times to Come Eric Cline “It Was a Tradition When You Turned 16” Ramona Louise Wheeler “Calm Face of the Storm” art by Mark Evans Derek Künsken “The House of Styx” Part II art by Eldar Zakirov Don Sakers: The Reference Library —The Oppenheimer Alternative by Robert J. Sawyer —Accepting the Lance by Sharon Lee & Steve Miller —Frozen Orbit by Patrick Chiles —The Blood-Dimmed Tide by Michael R. Johnson —Starborn & Godsons by Larry Niven, Jerry Pournelle, Steven Barnes —The Renegat by Kristine Karthryn Rusch —Vulcan’s Forge by Robert Mitchell Evans —The Collapsium by Wil McCarthy —Gremlins Go Home by Ben Bova & Gordon R. Dickson Brass Tacks (Letters) Anthony Lewis: Upcoming Events
Analog Science Fiction and Fact (Astounding) Vol. 140 No. 5 & 5 May/Jun 2020 Publisher: Peter Kanter Editor: Trevor Quachri Managing Editor: Emily Hockaday Editorial Assistant: Rae Purdom Senior Art Director: Victoria Green Cover: Donato Giancola 208 pages, $7.99 on sale until June 16, 2020 Analog website SF Value Pack-8 $7.95 SF Double Issue Value Pack-12 $15.95 SF Value Pack-16 $12.95
Advertiser Spotlight Digest, paperback, pulp, and comic collectors may want to request a subscription to the free monthly Modern Age Books all-picture catalog. It’s a great source for collectibles with accurate grading, speedy service, and great prices. Request a subscription here.
Readin’ and Writin’ Book Trailer for Lake County Incidents by Alex Cizak. I wrote a short review of the book on Goodreads, but see my full version in the upcoming TDE.
Read this week: The Hard Case Crime edition of Fright by Cornell Woolrich. A beautifully written noir crime story with a socko finish.
Finished writing my article on Fotocrime this week and laid out the pages. The Digest Enthusiast No. 12 is getting close to final so I sent out many requests to digest magazine editors for news updates, the final step of content creation. There are some great things in the works!
Vintage SF Digest Space Science Fiction Feb. 1953 Contents Page Lester del Rey: An Editorial on Immortality H. Beam Piper “Ullr Uprising” part one of two, art by Paul Orban William Morrison “The Hunters” art by H.R. van Donge Coming Events Milton A. Rothman’s Solution Unknown George O. Smith’s Book Reviews Science: Fact and Fiction H.B. Fyfe “Exile” art by Ed Emshwiller John Christopher “Relativity” art by Ed Emshwiller Poul Anderson “Security” art by Alex Ebel Take-Off (Letters of Comment) In Memoriam: Earle Bergey
Publisher: John Raymond Editor: Lester del Rey Assoc. Editor: John Fell, John Vincent Art Director: Milton Berwin Cover: Alex Ebel 5.5” x 7.5” 160 pages 35¢ cover price
Paul Fraser reviews Astounding Science Fiction Vol. 33 No. 3 May 1944 on SF Magazines.
Victoria Silverwolf reviews Fantastic Vol. 14 No. 3 March 1965 on Galactic Journey.
The print version of season one of Guns + Tacos season one arrived last Saturday. Each of its two volumes, created and edited by Michael Bracken and Trey H. Barker include three stories around 40 pages each. Volume One: Gary Phillips, Bracken, and Frank Zafiro. Volume Two: Barker, William Dylan Powell, James A. Hearn, and a bonus story by Bracken, making this the thicker of the two volumes. Season Two has been ordered and will begin later this year from Down & Out Books.
Art Taylor writes about the story order in his new anthology The Boy Detective & The Summer of ’74 at Auntie M Writes. (Hat tip Kevin Tipple).
Artist and author Tony Gleeson’s new book, Find the Money, is now available on amazon. The mysterious Vanessa has vanished, and it’s worth a million dollars to a vicious drug lord to get her back. But the ransom disappears, turning up in the hands of a bewildered innocent bystander, while ruthless gangsters and hapless kidnappers alike desperately search for the money. Meanwhile, Detective Marlon Morrison, who only wants to comfortably ride out the final year and a half before his retirement without incident, finds himself involved with a growing succession of murder victims, and a bizarre case growing in complexity by the hour…
Josh Pachter talks to Publisher’s Weekly about his anthologies The Misadventures of Ellery Queen and The Misadventures of Nero Wolfe. (Hat tip Michael Bracken)
Doug Draa announced on Facebook that Weirdbook No. 42 has gone to print!
A.T. Sayre describes his joy and appreciation at having his first story, “Rover,” published in the venerable Analog.
Found all four March/April 2020 Dell digests on shelves this week at my local Barnes & Noble’s. Alfred Hitchcock’s features William Burton McCormick’s cover story “Night Train to Berlin.” Ellery Queen’s cover highlights its “Mystery Strangers” theme. Although not listed on the cover, indie favorite Preston Lang also has a story inside—congrats!
Asimov’s cover features Nancy Kress’ “Semper Augustus” and Analog continues their retro-look celebration of their 90th year. Note F&SF Editor C.C. Finley’s name on the cover, and inside there’s a new story by Edd Vick* and Manny Frishberg. *Vick as interviewed by D. Blake Werts in The Digest Enthusiast No. 6.
Readin’ and Writin’ Finished the audio book version of The Big Sleep by Raymond Chandler and loved it. I listened while driving and more than once got so lost in the gorgeous prose I had to try to remember what was happening in the plot. Narrator Ray Porter’s cadence and inflections are a perfect match to Tom Hanks’.
Also on audio, I listened to Break Shot: My First 21 Years by James Taylor. A intimate memoir with Taylor’s recollections of family dysfunction, fighting addiction, and working with Danny (Kootch) Kortchmar, Peter Gordon, The Beatles, Joni Mitchell, and Carol King. This guided tour of his early life is interspersed with his gorgeous melodies. Riveting, sad, and unforgettable.
In print, I read Mike Shayne Mystery Magazine June 1957. This issue wraps up the trilogy of the serialized Weep for a Blond Corpse, with more action and excitement than the previous two installments. It also boasts two outstanding novelets by Helen Nielsen and Tedd Thomey, as well as some fine short stories by Fletcher Flora, James Schucker, D.E. Forbes, Murray Wolf, and F. Keston Clarke. A great issue of a great digest magazine! Watch for my reviews in a coming issue of bare•bones.
Jeff Vorzimmer, editor of Stark House Press’ Best of Manhunt, read through the current issue of The Digest Enthusiast and awarded it a 5-Star rating this week on GoodReads. Thanks much, Jeff!
TDE12 Update: Met with my writing group on Thursday and shared my review of Paperback Fanatic No. 43, which will appear in TDE12. Also completed the initial layout of my interview with Tony Gleeson for the issue. Thanks to Tony, it’s loaded with beautiful artwork—mostly from vintage digests.
From the Vault Ad copy on page 2: “. . . if you enjoy this issue let us enter a subscription for you so that True Crime Detective may be delivered to you on or before publication date without extra cost. You will find each issue a little better than the one before—an anthology of the best detective true crime stories new and old.” Cost? $1.40 for 4 issues. In 2020 dollars that’s $13.53. I have a feeling it would be more, but I’d get it if it were still being published today. Next week: the final issue.
True Crime Detective Vol. 3 No. 3 Summer 1953 Contents Page W.T. Brannon “Rendezvous at Rondout” Joseph Shillips “They Wrote Their Own Convictions” Homer Croy “Cherokee Bill” William Roughead “The Merrett Mystery” Manly Wade Wellman “The General Dies at Dusk” Miriam Allen deford “The Reluctant Lover” Frank Mullady “Judgement for a Messiah”
Publisher: Lawrence E. Spivak Editors: Anthony Boucher, J. Francis McComas General Manager: Joseph W. Ferman Managing Editor: Robert P. Mills Advisory Editor: Charles Angoff Art Director: George Salter Cover: Dirone Photography from “Rendezvous at Rondout” 5.5” x 7.75” 128 pages 35¢
“Chase Montgomery wasn’t just out of the closet—he was out of the house and leading one-man Gay Pride parades around our little two-stoplight Texas town until he disappeared on the first without saying goodbye.” “Chase Your Dreams” by Michael BrackenAlfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine June 2016
The newly designed Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine is now on sale at Barnes & Noble and other select newsstands.
Contents Page Happy Holidays from AHMM Linda Landrigan: A Cup of Crime Yet for Auld Lang Syne (introduction) The Lineup Steve Hockensmith “The Last Noel” art by Kelly Denato Kevin Egan “The Tombs Angel” Mark Lagasse: Scrambled Plum (puzzle, solution on page 40) Sharon Hunt “Silent Night” Mysterious Photograph $25 fiction contest “Famous Last Words” Joseph D’Agnese “The Detective Who Stopped By Bedford Street” Teresa Dovalpage “The Sandalwood Killer” art by Tim Foley Mark Thielman “The Wreck of the Edward Fitzsimmons” Laurel Flores Fantauzzo: Booked and Printed —Patron Saints of Nothing by Randy Ribay —Sarah Jane by James Sallis Art Taylor “The Boy Detective and the Summer of ’74” James Tipton “On the Banks of the Styx” Shauna Washington “Alternate Reality” art by Hank Blaustein Olivia Dunnett “The Witness” Wayne J. Gardiner “Mistaken Identity” Arlene Fisher: Dying Words (acrostic puzzle, solution on page 192) Paul Grigg “Mossad Rules” Michael Mallory selects/introduces a Mystery Classic: “The Stroke of Thirteen” by Lillian De La Torre (as told to James Boswell, August 1780) The Story That Won (Sep/Oct) “Tempting, No?” by S.D. Burke Statement of Ownership, Management, and Circulation Coming in AHMM Mar/Apr 2020 Directory of Services/Indicia Classified Marketplace
Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine Vol. 65 No. 1 & 2 Jan/Feb 2020 Publisher: Peter Kanter Editor: Linda Landrigan Managing Editor: Jackie Sherbow Senior Director of Art & Production: Porter C. McKinnon Senior AD: Victoria Green Cover: Shutterstock 192 pages $7.99 on newsstands until Feb. 18, 2020 Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine website
The Digest Enthusiast: “Chase Your Dreams,” from AHMM (June 2016), is a great example of a story that evokes an emotional response. What prompts you to include social commentary in a story? Do themes emerge while writing, or are they part of the initial planning process?
Michael Bracken: I rarely start with a theme and never intentionally include social commentary because to do so runs the risk of turning a story into a sermon or, worse, a polemic.
When I let characters react to situations I put them in, sometimes themes emerge that represent beliefs different than my own, and it’s important to let the story be the story and not have a theme forced onto it that fits my beliefs. (Think about all the great noir movies ruined by nonsensical happy endings because movie makers didn’t think audiences would tolerate themes like “life sucks and then you die.”)
“Chase Your Dreams” presents a strong example of what happens when you build characters from the inside out. The protagonist is a closeted gay man in small-town Texas and his clandestine lover,a man who is out and proud of it, disappears. The protagonist is torn between searching for his lover and the realization that by doing so he will out himself. The theme emerges from the actions the protagonist takes and how the other characters react to those actions.
Alfred Hitchcock June 2016 Contents Page Linda Landrigan’s Editor’s Notes: It Takes a Village The Lineup Michael Bracken “Chase Your Dreams” Sarah Weinman “Death of a Feminist” art by Tim Foley Willie Rose: The Mysterious Cipher (solution on page 93) Martin Limón “The King of K-Pop” Arlene Fisher: Dying Words acrostic puzzle Janice Law “A Taste of Murder” art by Linda Weatherly Mysterious Photograph: Words Taking Flight Brendan DuBois “A Battlefield Reunion” Erica Wright “Patsy Cline at Harry’s Last Chance Saloon” art by Ally Hodges Ruth Chessman “Poor Sherm” (Mystery Classic selected and introduced by Jane K. Cleland) Robert C. Hahn: Booked & Printed —Death On a Starry Night by Betsy Draine and Michael Hinden —Capitol Punishment by Andrew Welsh-Huggins —The Day After Death by Lynn C. Miller The Story that Won (Dec. 2015) “A Better Plan” by Charles R. McCrary, Jr. Coming in AHMM Jul/Aug 2016 Directory of Services/Indicia Solution to the May “Dying Words” Classified Marketplace
Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine Vol. 61 No. 6 June 2016 Publisher: Peter Kanter Editor: Linda Landrigan Senior Assistant Editor: Jackie Sherbow VP Art & Production: Susan Mangan Senior AD: Victoria Green Cover: Chuntisel/iStockphoto 112 pages $4.99 Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine website
Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine Nov/Dec 2019 Contents Page Linda Landrigan: Trust Me! (introduction) The Lineup Leslie Budewitz “Miss Starr’s Good-Bye” James L. Ross “Last Night in Malibu” art by Ron Chironna Mark Lagasse: Scrambled George (puzzle, solution on page 70) Mark Thielman “Thanksgiving Eve” Janice Law “The Stop-In Motel” R.T. Lawton “A Loaf of Bread” Black Orchid Novella Award Contest Susan Oleksiw “Just Another Runaway” James Tipton “Candy Box” art by Noah Bailey John H. Dirckx “Tragedy at Daybreak” Laurel Flores Fantauzzo: Booked and Printed —The Bone Fire by S.D. Sykes —Without a Prayer by Susan Ashline —Party: A Mystery by Jamaica Kincaid Dave Zeltserman “Terrible Thoughts” Deborah Lacy “The Sky’s the Limit” art by Ally Hodges Mysterious Photograph $25 fiction contest “The Words of the Prophets” Melissa Yi “Dueling Dojos” Peter Colt “The Hippie” Arlene Fisher: Dying Words (acrostic puzzle, solution on page 192) O’Neil De Noux “A Meanness in Me” S.L. Franklin “Seal of the Confessional” Gary Phillips: The Case File Crime in Sequences The Story That Won (Jul/Aug) “The Angel Tree” by Craig M. Hanson Index Vol. 64 2019 Coming in AHMM Jan/Feb 2020 Directory of Services/Indicia Classified Marketplace
Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine Vol. 64 No. 11 & 12 Nov/Dec 2019 Publisher: Peter Kanter Editor: Linda Landrigan Managing Editor: Jackie Sherbow Senior Director of Art & Production: Porter C. McKinnon Senior AD: Victoria Green Cover: Maggie Ivy 192 pages $7.99 on newsstands until Dec. 17, 2019 Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine website
Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine Sep/Oct 2019 Contents Linda Landrigan: Tour de Crime (introduction) The Lineup Eve Fisher “The Seven-Day Itch” art by Hank Blaustein Brian Cox “The Surogate Initiative” Mark Lagasse: Scrambled Highsmith (puzzle, solution on page 45) Mysti Berry “Yorkshire Ripper” David Hagerty “Drinks at the El Navajo” art by Noah Bailey Mysterious Photograph $25 fiction contest “Tempting, no?” Emily Devenport “Not My Circus, But They are My Monkeys” Jim Fusilli “Niall Nelson is on My Flight” Tom Mead “Incident at Widow’s Perch” Janice Law “The Island” Michael Steele Valade “Dead Man’s Hand” art by Tim Foley Arlene Fisher: Dying Words (acrostic puzzle, solution on page 192) Meredith Anthony “Eddy Gets His” Laurel Flores Fantauzzo: Booked and Printed Angela Zeman “The Second Tales of Roxanne” Tom Larsen “Alienta Del Diablo” (Wilson Salinas) Mystery Classic: Selected and Introduced by Marvin Lachman G.K. Chesterton “The Garden of Smoke” (Mystery Classic) The Story That Won (May/Jun) “Off the Trail” by Damon Privette Coming in AHMM Nov/Dec 2019 Directory of Services/Indicia Classified Marketplace
Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine Vol. 64 No. 9 & 10 Sep/Oct 2019 Publisher: Peter Kanter Editor: Linda Landrigan Associate Editor: Jackie Sherbow Senior Director of Art & Production: Porter C. McKinnon Senior AD: Victoria Green Cover: McMillian Digital Art 192 pages $7.99 on newsstands until Oct. 22, 2019 Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine website